Pregnant women as well as new mothers and their babies enjoy special protection.
The provisions of the German Maternity Protection Act, the Mutterschutzgesetz (MuSchG), are designed to protect them from health risks and give women the opportunity to recover from childbirth and settle into their new routine as a mother.
Section 1 (2) of the Maternity Protection Act stipulates that the provisions of the Act apply to women who are engaging in an employment relationship within the meaning of Section 7 (1) Sozialgesetzbuch IV(social code, book IV, SGB IV)). The provisions of the Act apply to the following individuals, irrespective of whether they are engaging in such an employment relationship:
- Women undergoing in-company vocational training as well as female interns within the meaning of Section 26 Berufsbildungsgesetz (Vocational Training Act, BBiG),
- Women with disability who are employed at a sheltered workshop,
- Women who are working as development workers within the meaning of the Entwicklungshelfer-Gesetz (Development Workers Act, EhfG); however, Sections 18 to 22 do not apply to them,
- Women who are working as volunteers within the meaning of the Gesetz zur Förderung von Jugendfreiwilligendiensten (Youth Volunteer Services Act, JFDG) or the Bundesfreiwilligendienstgesetz (Federal Volunteer Service Act, BFDG),
- Women who are members of a religious association, deaconess or similar community and are working for that association, deaconess or community, either holding a post there or on a supply of staff contract (the provisions of the Act also apply to these women during periods of out-of-school training completed there),
- Women who are engaging in home work and women who have been accorded the same status as individuals engaging in home work in accordance with the provisions of Section 1 (1) and (2) Heimarbeitsgesetz (Home Work Act, HAG), provided that they are actively involved in the production of the items made; however, Sections 10 and 14 do not apply to them and Section 9 (1) to (5) applies to them mutatis mutandis ,
- Women who, due to their economic dependence, are considered employee-like persons; however, Sections 18, 19 (2) and 20 do not apply to them; and
- Female students, provided that their university or school prescribes where, when and how their training is provided, as well as female students who are undertaking a work placement that is a mandatory part of their degree programme or training; however, Sections 17 to 24 do not apply to them.
Special rules, namely the provisions of the Bayerische Urlaubs- und Mutterschutzverordnung (Bavarian Directive on Annual Leave and Maternity Protection for Civil Servants, BayUrlMV) as it appears in the publication thereof dated 28 November 2017 (Bayerisches Gesetz- und Verordnungsblatt [Bavarian Law and Ordinance Gazette, GVBI] no. 21, p. 543), apply to women with the employment status Beamtin .
To enjoy the special protection afforded by the Maternity Protection Act, expectant mothers must disclose their pregnancy to their employer or their contact person at their university or school .
Issues governed by the Maternity Protection Act include:
- The duration of maternity leave,
- Protection against dismissal,
- Workplace design
- Maternity allowance
I am pregnant - what happens next?
What will happen next depends on whether you are a staff member or a student/intern.
In either case, a risk assessment in accordance with the provisions of Section 5 Arbeitsschutzgesetz (Occupational Health and Safety Act, ArbSchG) and Section 10 Mutterschutzgesetz (Maternity Protection Act, MuSchG) as well as the risk assessment Covid -19 or, respectively, the risk assessment mentioned on the University's Covid-19 web page will have to be carried out.
- Form "Benachrichtigung über die Beschäftigung bzw. Tätigkeit einer schwangeren oder stillenden Frau(expectant mothers at work form)
- Form "Beschäftigung einer schwangeren oder stillenden Frau zwischen 20:00 Uhr und 22:00 Uhr"(request for permission to employ a pregnant or breastfeeding woman to work between 20:00 and 22:00)
- Form "Ergänzende Benachrichtigung "Beschäftigung an Sonn- Feiertagen"(notification of employment of a pregnant or breastfeeding woman to work on Sundays and public holidays)
Students attending courses at the University of Würzburg or interns undertaking a work placement at the University of Würzburg
(If you are undertaking a placement at an institution other than the University of Würzburg, please contact your placement employer.)
- The Chancellor's information letter to students
- The Chancellor's information letter to the Univeristy's teaching staff
- Form " Benachrichtigung über eine schwangere oder stillende Frau(notification of pregnant or breastfeeding student who is attending mandatory courses or undertaking a mandatory work placement)
- Form "Ergänzende Benachrichtigung "Beschäftigung bis 22:00Uhr, an Sonn-/Feiertagen"( notification of a pregnant or breastfeeding student who is attending courses lasting until 22:00 or courses taught on Sundays/public holidays )
- You can also contact the team at the Office of the Women's Representative of the University for information and advice.
Other sources of information
- Risk assessments pursuant to Section 5 Arbeitsschutzgesetz (Occupational Health and Safety Act, ArbSchG) and Section 10 Mutterschutzgesetz (Maternity Protection Act, MuSchG)
- The University's Medical Centre
- The University's health and safety officers (for staff members only)
- Office of the Women's Representative of the University
- Family Services
- Checklist for maternity protection of the University's Radiation Protection Office (for staff members only)
Relevant laws and regulations
- Mutterschutzgesetz (Maternity Protection Act, MuSchG)
- Arbeitsstättenverordnung (Workplace Health and Safety Directive, ArbStättV)
- Bayerische Mutterschutzverordnung (Bavarian Maternity Protection Directive), Verordnung über den Mutterschutz für Beamtinnen (Directive on Maternity Protection for Female Employees with Civil Servant Status, BayMuttSchV)
- Mutterschutz- und Elternzeitverordnung (Directive on Maternity Protection and Parental Leave for Federal Employees with Civil Servant Status, MuSchEltZV)
- Strahlenschutzgesetz (Radiation Protection Act, StrlSchG)
- Strahlenschutzverordnung (Radiation Protection Ordinance, StrlSchV)
- Mutterschafts-Richtlinien (Guidelines for Maternal Health Care, MuSchaftsRL)